11-30-2017 Tri-City Area History Page

1839 Berrien County Courthouse, Berrien Springs

 North Berrien Historical Museum is always interested in photos, stories or information sharing.  The museum can be contacted at 269-468-3330 or by email to info@northberrienhistory.org.

From the photo collection at the North Berrien Historical Museum

300 Coloma Avenue, Coloma

The Paw Paw River Journal

Men are just happy people!

 This needs no explanation – and is a fun read, no matter your gender.

Men are just happier people.  What do you expect from such simple creatures? Your last name stays put. The garage is all yours. Wedding plans take care of themselves. Chocolate is just another snack. You can never be pregnant. You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park. You can wear NO shirt to a water park.

Car mechanics tell you the truth. You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is just too icky. You don’t have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt. Wrinkles add character. Wedding dress – $5,000. Tux rental – $100. People never stare at your chest when you’re talking to them. New shoes don’t cut, blister, or mangle your feet. One mood all the time. Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat. You know stuff about tanks.

A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase. You can open all your own jars. You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness. If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend. Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack. Two pairs of shoes are more than enough. You almost never have strap problems in public. You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes. Everything on your face stays its original color.  The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades. You only have to shave your face and neck.

You can play with toys all your life. One wallet and one pair of shoes – one color for all seasons. You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look. You can ‘do’ your nails with a pocket knife. You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache. You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24th in 25 minutes.


When the bill arrives, Mike, Dave and John will each throw in $20, even though it’s only for $32.50. None of them will have anything smaller and none will actually admit they want change back.

When the girls get their bill, out come the pocket calculators.


A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he needs. A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she doesn’t need but it’s on sale.


A man has six items in his bathroom: toothbrush and toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel.

The average number of items in the typical woman’s bathroom is 337. A man would not be able to identify more than 20 of these items.


A woman has the last word in any argument. Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.


A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband. A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.


A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn’t. A man marries a woman expecting that she won’t change, but she does.


A woman will dress up to go shopping, water the plants, empty the trash, answer the phone, read a book, and get the mail.

A man will dress up for weddings and funerals.


Men wake up as good-looking as they went to bed. Women somehow deteriorate during the night.


Ah, children. A woman knows all about her children. She knows about dentist appointments and romances, best friends, favorite foods, secret fears and hopes and dreams.

A man is vaguely aware of some short people living in the house.


A married man should forget his mistakes. There’s no use in two people remembering the same thing!  And please remember, Ladies, I did not think up all this stuff!  I received it on the internet from a friend, and I’m just reporting it.  No… I’ll not tell you his name, lest some of the fair sex find him and burn his house down!

Coloma Library News

Read with Spirit

Spirit, a certified therapy dog will be at the library on Tuesday evenings from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. Children may sign up for a 15-minute slot by stopping in at the front desk or calling the library at 468-3431. Reading to therapy dogs is a fun way for children to build reading confidence and fluency.

Book Club

The Coloma Library Book Club is meeting on Thursday, December 14 at 5:30 p.m. The title to read before the discussion is “A Redbird Christmas” by Fannie Flagg.  Generally, depending on demand there are titles available for check-out at the front desk. The book club regularly meets every other Thursday and is always looking for new members.

Story Hour

Story Hour meets on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. Story Hour is for older toddlers and preschool children. Join Miss Amy for a story, simple craft and song-time. Story Hour is a free program, sign up is not required.


100 years ago – 1917

 One of the saddest deaths occurred when the gasoline engine on a spraying outfit exploded. Herman Molter, 19, attempted to roll on the ground to smother the flames, but was badly burned. Funeral services were held from the home and later at the Lutheran church.

Mrs. George W. Grant calls upon volunteers to help make blankets for the soldiers. Please knit a block six inches square and leave it at Grant & Son’s store. Any color can be used.

60 years ago – 1957

 The Hagar Farm Bureau group met at the Clymer School. Plans are progressing for a potluck supper. Mrs. Frank Viscuso is chairman and her helpers are Mrs. Sam Tavolacci, Mrs. Joe Moriconi and Mrs. Mike Laporta.

For members of the Coloma Salem Lutheran Church, Thanksgiving will have an added significance. They will meet in their spacious new church for the first time for this service.

The Latin I class of the high school spent months researching life and customs of the Romans. A Roman banquet was held at the conclusion of this project. All participants wore the dress of the Roman citizen. “Slave girls” from the elementary served the students.

30 years ago – 1987

 Coloma Lions will host their annual Pancake and Sausage Breakfast with Santa. Pictures can be taken with Santa for $1.00. Breakfast price is $2.75. Santa is also available for home visits.

The Drama Department of Coloma High School will present “The Wizard of Oz.” Tickets are $2. The director is Ralph Bower. A few cast members include: Wendy Arny, Jim Walke, Michelle Jaggars, John Bower, Karen Valenti and Wendy Stampfly.

Washington Elementary will hold their 15th annual Winter Carnival & Holiday Bazaar. The kitchen will be open all day for snacks & sandwiches.


100 years ago – 1917

 The Hartford Ladies’ Library will remain open, due to the generosity of Hartford folk who poured approximately $114 into the library treasury on “library day” last Thursday.

The work of remodeling the front of the fire engine room at the town hall has been completed, and the room is now in readiness for housing the township’s new fire truck. The cold nights during the time that the front of the building was torn out obliged night watchman Harley to start the truck motor several times each night to prevent it from freezing.

75 years ago – 1942

 From Hartford the first persons to purchase tuberculosis Christmas seals this year were: Robert F. Brown, J.C.Vanlierop and Guy Gifford. Seals were mailed from the tuberculosis association to towns all over Michigan. Mr. Bennett urged anyone not receiving seals to write the Michigan Tuberculosis Association.

The Thomas Jersey Farms, Inc. Jersey Herd, Hartford, has been given the Star Herd award for high production by the American Jersey Cattle Club, New York. A total of 54 cows produced 336,387 lbs. of milk, 19,805 lbs. fat.

Van Buren County has received a banner from the War Production Board in recognition of the salvage drive conducted here during September and October. The banner was sent to County Salvage Chairman, Dr. Leo F. Latus, Hartford, and will be presented to the board of supervisors at the next regular meeting.

50 years ago – 1967

 Hartford High School students got some first-hand information about other countries at an International Day assembly program last week. Nine foreign students spoke and answered questions and visited classes. They are Ricardo Rumayo, Mexico, studying nursery management at Hill Top Orchards; Kenneth Svensson, Sweden, Hartford High School; Uwe Querfeld, Germany, Hackett High School, Kalamazoo; and Peter Walker, England, also studying at Hill Top. There was also Masumi Ito, Japan, Three Rivers High School; Brit Stenberg, Norway, Hartford High School; Susanne Koecher, Germany, Gobles High School; Raymond Rahka, Finland, Parchment High School; and Erik Kosters, Netherlands, Three Rivers High School.

The Jaycees and Hartford merchants will co-sponsor a Christmas project. According to Jaycee President Roland Nicholson, the project will include a traffic-free mall on Main Street the week before Christmas, Santa Claus on the mall, and a home decorating contest.


90 years ago – 1927

 Mr. and Mrs. Sturgis Harmon, Watervliet, appeared in a music recital at the Masonic Temple on Dec. 16, 1927. Both are singers of extraordinary ability who need no introduction around the area. Mrs. Harmon is equally gifted as a pianist and dramatic reader.

The Watervliet Oil Company will be Santa Claus to its stockholders. On Dec. 16, 1927 they will receive a dividend of ten per cent on the holdings in the company.

Printed on Dec. 16, 1927: Complaint has been made that youths of school age are loitering about the streets late at night. Parents of these boys are notified that young boys found on the streets later than a reasonable hour, and who can offer no satisfactory explanation for being there, are liable to be taken into custody by the night officers. William L. Betz, Marshal

60 years ago – 1957

 On Sunday, Dec. 1, 1957 Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Selter of Watervliet celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary. They were married by the Rev. John D. Perrin, pastor of Plymouth Congregational Church.

Mrs. Virgil Matrau, Watervliet, is one of the top prize winners in the $30,000 Lenten-type recipe contest recently conducted by the Quaker Oats Company. As one of the 100 second-prize winners, her triumph was based on her ability to devise and submit a Lenten-type dish, easy and quick to make, as well as being tasty and attractive.

Mr. and Mrs. Wendell Danneffel are the proud parents of a seven-pound, one ounce baby girl, Rhonda Sue, who was born Dec. 4, 1957 at 5:39 pm.

30 years ago – 1987

 A total of 33 students from this area have been included in the 21st annual edition of Who’s Who Among American High School Students, 1986-87. From Watervliet: Lynn A. Case, Rebecca Epple, Phil Gearhart, Shannon Hanks, Roger Lottridge, Michelle Wark, Brian Coon, Anthony V. Faulkner, Michael Grear, Jeff Little, Matthew MacDonald, and Jennifer Winkler.

Mrs. Karen Nilson, sixth-grade teacher at North School, was named Watervliet Public Schools ‘Employee of the Month’ for Oct. 1987. The honor was based on her creative instructional methods and her special attention in aiding students to reach their highest potential.

Watervliet Fire Department announced the winners in the fire prevention poster contest: Justin Gaglieardo, Julie Tole, Lindsay Diouhy – all from South School, Ryan Berkholtz, – North School and Ryan Bauer – Catholic School.


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